We can’t be there in person to help and support you in a moment of crisis, but there are other options available to you if you can’t turn to someone you trust. By giving us your postcode (or one nearby to where you are right now) we can let you know about services in your area. Remember: this moment will pass; you won’t always feel the way you do right now.
If in doubt always call 999.
You can also sign up to Alumina, our online support for mental health and wellbeing here:
If I say the word “school” to you, I imagine many of you would groan! I don’t know about anyone else but I have a very love/hate relationship with school, the atmosphere there was one of the reasons I became ill in the first place, however they are also the reason that I’ve been able to build and develop myself to achieve what I never thought would have been possible!
The first time I noticed things weren’t right, I was in year 8 and had never really realised that mental health and self-harm were recognised issues - I didn’t understand why or what I was doing, only that I felt really down, and that was how I dealt with it. After about a year, I was able to reach out to a couple of amazing youth workers who suggested I go to the doctors, but unfortunately (as is common with CAMHS) I was put on a waiting list for 8 months before I received any support. I’ve always struggled to find the confidence to talk to my parents about it, andthen, until I recently transitioned into adult mental health support, school has been my main point of call for help.
It started out as a session with the school's pastoral support team, once a fortnight, then once a week, then twice a week (as things had taken a turn for the worse). When I transitioned onto sixth form, it was then recommended that I have sessions with the school counsellor which I continued through my A-levels. I know a lot of people can feel unsupported by their school, but for me they were the best support I’ve ever had and have played a crucial part in my recovery. They would check in with me often, chat through anything that was on my mind as well as practically supporting me to ensure I could carry on being in school.
To anyone who is struggling - even if you are in the process of receiving support, I would urge you, if you feel comfortable, to speak to someone at school and let them know what’s going on. Even if you are not sure where to even start, it can be absolutely anyone from your favourite teacher to a school counsellor or a student support worker, they would all be so glad to help you!
Always remember that no matter what you're facing - you're not alone, and there is a wealth of people at school to help you through your tough times. 💛💛💛💛
Hi. My name is Jess and I have been working for SelfharmUK (which is part of a bigger young people's charity called Youthscape) for over three years now. As well as running this website, I also spend one day a week running face-to-face groups and activities with young people either in school or here in the Youthscape building in Luton.
Sadly, most of us will have some connection with someone who has died by suicide. It might be a close connection - as in a family member or friend, or a completed unrelated one - as in someone who may have been hit by a train we were on.
Suicide is not an easy thing to get your head around, let alone talk about. Understanding why someone would attempt to take their own life is never very straightforward, and not to mention extremely upsetting and scary too.
Despite this - we need to talk about suicide, now more than ever.
As a young person, those stats probably sound really frightening!
But you don't have to be afraid.
There are lots of organisations out there that are working really hard in order to prevent young suicides. These include Papyrus and the Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide. However, as hard as they are working, they could actually use your help too.
One of the easiest ways you could really help a friend who is struggling with suicidal thoughts or who knows someone who has taken their own life, is actually just to listen to them without judging.
If you do want to say something supportive, try not to use phrases that sound disrespectful or judgemental like "committed suicide" or "failed attempt at suicide". Instead, use phrases that sound compassionate and thoughtful like "took their life" or "attempted to end their life".
Another way you could watch the language you're using is actually by what you say every day. Saying "Kill yourself" to your friend when you disagree with something they've said is incredibly insensitive. Even saying "I can't live without [chocolate]" could also appear quite thoughtless.
Even if you do say the wrong thing, or have done in the past - don't feel like you can't talk to someone about suicide. By saying nothing, we're not giving the people we love and care about a chance to say they need help.
This article was written by Sophie, a previous Graduate Volunteer with Youthscape, to celebrate World Music Day.
I am a massive lover of music; I’m constantly listening to it. I’ve actually got my headphones in now as I write this!
Music is powerful. It can be so influential, and can be used as a way to express feelings, share a particular message, tell a story, and bring people together. There’s always something for everyone’s taste. You can study music, create it, or simply just listen and appreciate it. There is so much I love about music, where do I even start?
I’ve grown up in a musical family. My dad led the music at Church and was always playing his guitar and singing around the house. Whenever we would see his side of the family, it would always end up in a good ol’ sing song, and it still does! My brother is also very musical and I’d say I am too, though not to the same extent – my guitar playing skills are a little rusty! However, as I said, I’m always listening to music, and it has certainly helped me through life.
Music is everywhere we go; most shops we go into will always have music playing in the background, and I’ve even been in some shops that have a DJ! I also particularly like the pianos at St Pancras train station, free for anyone to play. It amazes me how much talent there is out there, and being able to hear a performance live is always so great! I love when you can literally feel the music, the bass in your chest, those songs that give you goosebumps, music that really resonates with you.
I love that music is for any and every mood, from when you need a good cry, to when you’re absolutely pumped and feel on top of the world! Music would help me through times where I felt alone and it would sometimes express my emotions – you know, when there’s a song that completely describes how you’re feeling or what you’re going through? Or when a song puts into words what you struggle to? Music helps calm my anxiety and has distracted me when I need a break from what’s going on around me – headphones in, world out! Music can put me in an amazing mood, it can lift me if I’m feeling a bit down, it can bring back great memories and can make me want to sing and dance around wherever I am (and I will do so where appropriate!)
Music has got me through many hours of work, revision and essays. I know a lot of people who need silence to work, but music motivates me and helps me concentrate (most of the time). I remember my friend once telling me how she got around music being a distraction - she had started listening to songs in a different language so it meant she couldn’t get distracted by singing along to it!
I absolutely love how music brings people together, through the love of a song, band/artist, cause - we recently saw how so many people came together for the benefit concert, to help raise funds for the victims of the Manchester attack and their families. As well as people actually being at the concert, so many people tuned in to watch from home too. Music can connect people across cities, countries and continents, and in a way, it’s like a language we all share.
I just couldn’t imagine a world without music, could you? There are so many reasons to celebrate it today!
How School Helped My Mental Health Recovery
If I say the word “school” to you, I imagine many of you would groan! I don’t know about anyone else but I have a very love/hate relationship with school...